|The Lion (Aaron Poole) and the Beaver (Joey Klein) in The Animal Project. |
Photo by John Gundy. Courtesy of Mongrel Media.
The film opens in Toronto at TIFF BellLightbox on June 6 and will have a Q&A with Veninger and the cast following the 7:15 PM screenings on the 6th and 7th. In keeping with The Animal Project’s spirit for trying new things, though, the film will have a global release on Vimeo VOD along with a Canadian release on iTunes. (It also hits DVD June 10 for those of us who still like hard copies.) If you can’t make it to Toronto, enjoy The Animal Project at home with a furry on your lap! Two paws up! (Callie agrees.)
Synopsis: Leo (Aaron Poole) is a mid-30s widower, single parent, and struggling acting teacher. His relationship with his teenage son (Jacob Switzer) is rocky, and he's dissatisfied with his everyday life. So, after he has an unusual and inspiring dream, he decides to shake things up by having the group of actors he teaches do something called "The Animal Project" -- whereby they will all don furry mascot suits and become 'animals' in the real world. It's a long, rainy night, and not everything goes as planned. But in the process of opening themselves up to the unknown, each participant in The Animal Project not only learns something about themselves, but also has the chance to grow a little bit.
Review excerpt: “Shot with a skeleton crew and an enthusiasm for originality, The Animal Project rings of innovation and offbeat authenticity. This quirky maplecore pic might be Veninger’s finest project to date.” (Full review from TIFF.)
The Animal Project opens June 6 from Mongrel Media.